A Montgomery County police officer is fighting for his life after he was struck by a car Thursday night in Rockville.
Officer Noah Leotta was conducting a traffic stop on Rockville Pike nearby Edmonston Drive at around 9:47 p.m.
“A Montgomery County police officer had stopped a motorist for a violation,” said Montgomery County Police Capt. Paul Starks. “While he was out of the car, he was struck by another passing motorist. That driver remained on the scene.”
Police say a 47-year-old man from Olney was behind the wheel of the 2012 Honda CRV and slammed into the police cruiser and then into the 24-year-old officer.
Leotta is in critical condition at Suburban Hospital with life-threatening injuries, police say.
Investigators are investigating whether that driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
“Ironically this officer is temporarily assigned to the Holiday Alcohol Task Force,” said Capt. Starks.
In fact, it was the mission of Officer Leotta to get drunk drivers off the streets.
Before joining the force in 2013, Leotta interned with the department in a unit that focuses on impaired driving enforcement.
Montgomery County Police Chief Tom Manger said in a statement, “Noah is not only a dedicated young police officer, he is a caring person who became a cop to serve the community where he grew up. He needs everyone’s prayers as he fights for his life.”
The driver was taken into custody, but has not been charged. Police are waiting for the results of a blood test and the State's Attorney's Office will decide if any charges will follow.